The Brief No. 22: We Celebrate MLK

 
 
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January 16, 2019

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Every year Hire an Esquire observes Martin Luther King Jr day by closing our offices. We hope that our team will take the day to serve their community(ies). This year we’re also sharing the stories of some of the lesser-known civil rights heroes who helped to advance the excruciatingly slow progress of equality in America. We’ve also curated a Spotify playlist including classic and contemporary civil rights anthems. Who is your favorite Unsung Civil Rights hero?

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One Small (Mis)Step for Man-afort... One giant clue in the Mueller investigation. Botched redactions by Manafort’s counsel imply that Mueller’s reasons for voiding Manafort’s cooperation agreement are that he believes Manafort lied about sharing campaign polling data with Russian officials and a meeting with a Russian business associate from his days in the Ukraine—and these are likely key reasons for voiding Manafort’s cooperation agreement. While missteps in e-discovery 101 have an obvious negative impact on cases, the ability to command more sophisticated technology is increasingly defining winners and losers in court according to a recent report by Crowell & Moring.

The Upside Down: While 2018 was the year of law firm mergers, 2019 may be the year of unlikely mergers and spinoffs. Feeling the pressure from the growth of Alternative Legal Service Providers (ASPs), law firms may consider bringing an ASP in-house. Big Four’s purchase of law firms outside the U.S. could push the ABA and U.S. regulators to reconsider Big Four’s place in the U.S. legal market. Corporations may spinoff legal departments as a means to cut costs and create profit centers. From Linklaters and Deloitte  starting the year off with an unlikely collaboration to UnitedLex’s “rebadging” 150 DXC Technology attorneys and landing an “IP incubator” deal with Ford Motor Co., more in the industry agree with United Lex’s CEO Dan Reed that the legal industry is entering a new dimension.

Judge Friederich is Not Impressed: The long strange trip for the legal industry continues as the frat house met the courthouse. In defense of a Russian defendant in the Mueller Investigation, attorney Eric Dubelier of Reed Smith submitted filings mocking Special Counsel Mueller and quoting Animal House. U.S. District Court Judge Dabney Friedrich, a Trump appointee, called the filings “unprofessional, inappropriate and ineffective” to which Dubelier responded with claims of bias and what many believe to be another glib reference (this time to The Big Lebowski) of “that’s your opinion.”  Dubelier may have to withdraw from the case as a result, but perhaps he has a new future as a Bromance writer?

Hanging Chads: A hangover to Jim Crow Laws in Florida that permanently disenfranchised Florida citizens convicted of felonies was overturned by Florida voters via Amendment 4 to the Florida constitution on the November 6, 2018 ballot. Previously, 10% of Florida’s adult population was ineligible to vote. The only way to restore voting rights prior to Amendment 4 was a clemency board that heard a limited amount of cases a year, had a multi-year backlog, had complete discretion and showed bias against minorities. Amendment 4, which went into effect on January 8, 2019, is worded to automatically restore voting rights to felons—not including those convicted of murder or felony sex crimes—after the terms of their sentences are complete. Still many are anticipating complications and hangups, because when have elections ever been smooth in Florida?

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In this week’s episode of The Jabot, Kathryn Rubino talks with Elena Deutsch, founder of Women Interested in Leaving (big) Law (“WILL”) about career changes, how to leave Big Law, and finding a career you enjoy. While many Big Law attorneys can’t shake the golden handcuffs, identifying the skills you love to use and what you are naturally good at is the first step to making a change. Read on about how Hire an Esquire helped an attorney make ends meet while transitioning from Big Law to entrepreneurship.

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Staffing up for a project or growing your legal team? Learn more about how Hire An Esquire can help.